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Dragon's Bait by Vivian Vande Velde
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Dragon's Bait (1992)

by Vivian Vande Velde

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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5811225,655 (3.88)8
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» See also 8 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 12 (next | show all)
From the beginning of this very predictable and convenience-packed book, it was too obvious that the dragon, Selendrile, was never going to eat Alys and she was never in any real danger. This meant any mistrust or conflict the author tried so hard to create in Alys with regard to Selendrile came off as contrived and forced.

This contrived feeling was then exacerbated by the fact that the author overexplained everything, giving no credit to the reader for figuring things out on their own. I get that this is a young adult book, but I'd like to think that even as a 12-year-old I could have figured these things out without a tiresome paragraph after every event (or, at times, every thought Alys ever has!) in which Alys then explained why she thought what she did or why such-and-such could be assumed or why he might mistrust or she him or how she might show him her mistrust and ughgggghgh. Annoying!

Then, there is the "lesson" that Selendrile is so obviously teaching Alys about revenge... which he does by patronizing and manipulating her.

More unexplained-yet-convenient items include:
- What Selendrile actually is (A shape-shifter? A dragon? A fairy? An elf? A wizard? All of a sudden dragons aren't actually dragons but have always been shape-shifters?? I don't get it.)
- Why Selendrile even cares about Alys or wants to help her (aside from the fact that she's different because she threw a rock at him)
- The random witch (good thing she was clumsily introduced earlier in the story or she couldn't have come back later to cause a problem!)

The only thing that wasn't predictable or convenient about this book was that it had the most abrupt ending to a book that I've ever experienced. ( )
  wordcauldron | Jul 11, 2018 |
While I enjoyed this book,I felt it lacked a complex plot and the character developement was shallow. I picked up the book at a library sale and enjoyed the premise of the story about a girl set out for dragon bait for her alleged witchcraft (not true), only to make a tenuous agreement with the shape-shifting fae to get revenge on those who condemned her as a witch. It wasn't until the end of the book that she seems to learn her lesson that Revenge has a way of backfiring. My other issue was that I didn't think the Dragon character was developed enough and the relationship between the two main characters doesn't ever seem to get going except at the end. Still, I enjoyed the book, simple though it was, and could easily recommend it a young adult, say 12+ .
Jack Murphy ( )
  urph818 | Oct 31, 2016 |
Dragon's Bait was a wonderful book filled with wonder, revenge, and lies. I really enjoyed this book, it was short, sweet, and to the point. The ending was especially good and exciting. ( )
  mariahsidhe | May 12, 2016 |
Alys is a young girl in a medieval village like any other--until she's abruptly accused of being a witch and staked out on a hillside to appease a dragon. Furious at the betrayal, she makes a deadly deal with the dragon--she'll help him and he'll kill the villagers. Their travels together bring them to a better understanding of each other's prickly natures, but the final reckoning looms... ( )
  wealhtheowwylfing | Feb 29, 2016 |
I quite like Vivian Vande Velde. She writes such great characters - never perfect, never effortlessly intelligent or clever, but so strong even after mistakes.

I've read Dragon's Bait before but couldn't quite recall the details - so when this slim book passed my way, I just had to reread it!

It's not a stereotypical book about damsels in distress and dragons. It's a beautiful book on revenge and mistakes and surprising friendships.

I love Alys as a character. Unfortunately, Velde never really does tell us what goes behind those purple dragon eyes, so I can't say the same for Selendrile.

I do wish it were longer and more fleshed out. Like, we never really know why Selendrile feels like helping Alys out with revenge. Or what he thinks about flirting. Or much about the witch or the priest - that sort of thing. But still, a great book.

Three and a half stars. Very good.
If you like Dealing with Dragons or children books and fantasy, you'll probably like this too. ( )
  NineLarks | Sep 15, 2014 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Vivian Vande Veldeprimary authorall editionscalculated
Marsh, JamesCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nielsen, CliffCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To the members of my writers' group, without whom nothing would get done.
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The day Alys was accused of being a witch started out like any other.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0152166637, Paperback)

Fifteen-year-old Alys is not a witch. But that doesn't matter--the villagers think she is and have staked her out on a hillside as a sacrifice to the local dragon.
It's late, it's cold, and it's raining, and Alys can think of only one thing--revenge. But first she's got to escape, and even if she does, how can one girl possibly take on an entire town alone?
Then the dragon arrives--a dragon that could quite possibly be the perfect ally. . . .

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:16:18 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Wrongly condemned of witchcraft, fifteen-year-old Alys is tempted to take revenge on her accusers when the dragon to which she has been sacrificed turns out to be an ally.

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